Glow of Our Sweat: Poems
With poems, translations, and an essay, Francisco Aragón enacts a dialogue between poetry and prose, memory and imagination, self and other, as he deftly begins to un- cover a road where a gay, Latino, and cosmopolitan poet fully inhabits the world. More than a collection of poems, Glow of Our Sweat is a community of poems, one where multiple voices and genres mingle, converse, and commiserate.
''Reading Francisco Aragón's new collection of poetry and prose is like taking a bite of a perfectly ripened apple -- a fresh, sensual, subtly-flavored and long-lingering experience. His poems possess the meditative quality of one who has sat for a long time with memory and then gracefully distilled it into language. And what language -- vivid, unexpected and alive! His own work and his translations are a seamless whole documenting the life of the body, heart and soul. Complementing these is a moving essay about his journey toward integrating his homosexuality into his creative and public life as a poet.'' --Michael Nava six time Lambda Literary Award winner; recipient of the Whitehead Award for Lifetime Achievement in Gay and Lesbian Literature
''Francisco Aragón conceives his art making as interruption and interlude. Glow of Our Sweat is composed of finely crafted song-forms equipped to suspend and infer. With elegant modulation energizing images into sharp-edged focus, the translator in Aragón knows that surfaces of speech are a methodology of skin over which cultural histories can either resist or give way. His poetry aligns with the works of Rubén Darío, Federico García Lorca, and Francisco X. Alarcón--translated into the author's own idiom on familiar terms with Jack Spicer, among a few others. The concluding prose piece, "Flyer, Closet, Poem," provides a narrative of suppleness to situations that claim our sexual selfhood. It's a poetics coupled to community, and so to transformation of the world's body as some syllables are given to touch.''--Roberto Tejada author of Exposition Park (poems) and National Camera: Photography and Mexico's Image Environment.
''If imitation is flattery, influence is praise. Aragón, in this charming, vulnerable collection, refers to his series of probing translations as 'versions.' Much more than homage, these poems are siesta and question, old friends you recognize but whose names flirt with your sensibilities and continue breathing. Bravo.'' --Quraysh Ali Lansana author of They Shall Run: Harriet Tubman Poems
''Francisco Aragón's elegant mix of original poems, translations, imitations, and memoir makes for a collection that shows what an impressive writer he is in all of his chosen forms.''--John Matthias author of Kedging
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''The poems and the poets in translation play off of each other like reflections in a mirror. The careful editing and arrangement here make Glow of Our Sweat a coming out statement that is gentle, moving and irreversible.'' Don Cellini, Gently Read Literature
''Coming out is a process as endless as its audiences, Francisco Aragón aptly quotes Kenji Yoshino in Glow of Our Sweat (Scapegoat Press), Aragón's latest book, which is really two books in one. The first part is a collection of poems, but the key to truly appreciating these poems comes from reading the Part II: "Flyer, Closet, Poem," a single prose piece, a journal in time through which Aragón fleshes out Kenjo Yoshimo words exploring this seemingly infinite process of coming out and its relationship to his--our--many audiences.'' Richard Blanco, Lambda Literary